LA Adventist Forum This Weekend: "What Now? Adventism After San Antonio"

And being involved in the local church works really well until some young progressively conservative leader is appointed as minister, and you find yourself squeezed out of involvement. Then you realise what a shaky premise the whole denomination is based on.


Considering the GC “question” and its Division “territories” (see previous post), your comment sounds reasonable based on this official information:


Our mission: To help Adventist leaders within North America reach throughout the territories of the Division in fulfilling the vision and mission of the Seventh-day Adventist Church effectively, with integrity and in adherence to the organization’s strategic business objectives, standards, and Christian principles.


Territory: Bermuda, Canada, the French possession of Saint Pierre and Miquelon, the United States of America, the United States territories of Guam and Wake Island, the Federated States of Micronesia, Johnston Island, Marshall Islands, Midway Islands, Northern Mariana Islands, and Palau; comprising the Atlantic, Seventh-day Adventist Church in Canada, Columbia, Lake, Mid-America, North Pacific, Pacific, Southern, and Southwestern Union Conferences; and the Guam-Micronesia Mission.

In your "young progressively conservative leader is appointed as minister’, are you referencing the Local church?
Are you meaning that when it comes time for the Nominating Committee to nominate the church offices personnel for the next “terms”, that certain members are so called “retired” and others are nominated in their places?
Is that what you meant?
Or are you looking at Conference Office Administration?

may have to rethink how they may best channel their efforts
I think it’s time for those " third class divisions" to start a process of retribution for all the support they received from the “first world nations” so far. I propose to move the GC’s headquarters to Nigeria. Then they can do retribution by sending missionaries to the “first world nations” and sending money to repay them as well (which can take some time, but it’s OK, we understand…)…

Sarcasm aside, in another thread, someone pointed to the approved number of official delegates to the GC based on each union’s respective published membership stats. Does this provide an incentive, perhaps just the opposite, for union officials to engage in an honest to goodness membership audit? How many poor nations can truly afford to pay for the travel expenses of their allotted number of delegates? and their untold number of Special Guests? What if every union within each division territory - third class divisions in particular - were permitted to live within their means; that is, become truly self-supporting as well as they have been self-governing?

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I know it doesn’t work the same everywhere, but in our area the church chooses its pastors. There is no “appointed” minister. We interview a few of them, and choose who we want to be our pastor(S). We have currently seven pastors at LSU Church. The senior pastor is Chris Oberg (an ordained women) who is an excellent preacher and a brilliant mind. No wonder I rarely miss church…

But, in the scenario you described, yes, you are screwed up then. If that happens, the only option is to find another congregation. Or one can always move to Southern California!!! :wink:

I am very sorry, and saddened for millions of those Adventists that do not have the opportunity of being exposed to a healthier Christian approach. And I can’t understand why most of the Schools of Theology are not more progressive and don’t train new pastors in a more progressive way. Another reason for students to come to LSU or LLU.


I think it’s time for those " third class divisions" to start a process of retribution for all the support they received from the “first world nations” so far. I propose to move the GC’s headquarters to Nigeria. Then they can do retribution by sending missionaries to the “first world nations” and sending money to repay them as well (which can take some time, but it’s OK, we understand…)…


I doubt the Unions (and their constituents) will agree to have the Divisions interfering in their business by forcing them to change the status quo.

The Unions were created with the specific goal of avoiding abuse of power from the top - which is exactly what the GC is trying to do now.

The status quo is that ordination is a business pertaining to the Unions. This is the established order, and it can only be changed by the Unions’ constituents - not the forceful hand of a couple of bureaucratic administrators wearing black suits who are sitting at the top of the pyramid.

Will see how the “territories” will deal with the attempt to have their powers and rights violated. Whatever their constituents decide should be fine.


A huge problem has been how tradition [have male pastors] has turned into a Theology of Headship, and now is attempting to turn into a full Doctrine of the church because of Levitical priests and a few NT verses.
This shift allows a huge amount of Power at the Top to dictate and control Cultural Issues and desires at the bottom.
We are looking at a few people, controlling the needs and desires of the whole earth in order to accomplish their mission.
I dont think Ellen in her wildest “dreams and visions” could have imagined this type of power being desired or executed.


It isnt just a “witch hunt” that is the problem. It is much bigger.
It will be OK for those SDA University students studying Science if they want to stay within the SDA church system.
But it is a Huge problem for those who want to transfer and work on Masters or Ph.D degrees in non SDA places of learning. Or want to get jobs outside of the Adventist circle.
And, joining Professional Organizations will be somewhat awkward.
SA2015 has created a LOT of problems in our Universities.


They may try, but as you know they don’t control or have governance over a union. If that happened all hell would break loose as the constituents would be disenfranchised. This is untenable and will split the church - no doubt.

You seem to be interpreting the relationship between Divisions & Unions as a strict hierarchy. This is incorrect. You may find this a useful resource for understanding that church structure is meant to provide a division of authority:


I’m not exactly sure what you mean by “strict hierarchy,” but perhaps there’s a misunderstanding due to a minor semantical difference. All I can say to help clarify my point is that by definition alone the organizational structure of the Seventh-day Adventist Church is inherently a hierarchical institution, not unlike a representative form of government, which is actually what we all saw in action on the delegation floor in San Antonio. Here’s how our Church explains it:


The Seventh-day Adventist® Church is organized with a representative form of church government. This means authority in the Church comes from the membership of local churches. Executive responsibility is given to representative bodies and officers to govern the Church. Four levels of Church structure lead from the individual believer to the worldwide Church organization:

The local church is made up of individual believers

The local conference, or local field/mission, is made up of a number of local churches in a state, province, or territory

The union conference, or union field/mission, is made up of conferences or fields within a larger territory (often a grouping of states or a whole country)

The General Conference, the most extensive unit of organization, is made up of all unions/entities in all parts of the world. Divisions are sections of the General Conference, with administrative responsibility for particular geographical areas.

Each level is “representative.” That is, it reflects a democratic process of formation and election.

I was referring specifically to the local church. And no, I wasn’t waiting for the nominating committee to do its work, although it could also happen then. There is a myriad of opportunities for a person to be leaned on during the course of a year, and cause them to withdraw from a position, or be a lame duck.

In my situation, I saw a church reverse from a welcoming middle of the road church, to one that was limiting opportunities to serve. When I eventually challenged the leader over bullying tactics, I found the guns turned on me. I didn’t want this to be dragged through a business meeting, and agreed to resign at the request of the board. When the dust settled, the church had halved in size, of which a third ended up in a non SDA church plant. And I am forever thankful.

There is something to be said for grey heads. It is called wisdom. The church was led by a minister in his early 30’s, and the entire board with the exception of one person was under 40.

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I think you should really refer this to @cincerity before publishing, don’t you?

Yes, those are the “layers,” however authority shouldn’t be assumed to be of a “higher” over a “lower” level. Unions have their own authority which serves to keep the GC from exercising that kind of top-down power.



Removed… now I’m seeing the new thread on the San Diego Forum.

Did you mean, “…in our Church?”